Monday, February 21, 2011

Obese World-Too Much Feasting

It's not just an American problem, it's a worldwide problem as well. Obesity rates throughout the world are growing and have doubled over the last thirty years. According to an article in The Lancet, after doing extensive research (in 199 countries), researchers found that because of rising obesity rates, heart disease will be a growing problem in the future.
I've written about obesity problems before because of my own desire to lose weight and keep my blood pressure in check, but also because there is such a strong and obvious connection between being overweight and having medical problems, especially as you age. And who wants to have medical problems? That's something to try to avoid. I prefer trying to prevent illness through proper diet, excercise, Christian meditation and prayer.
It's hard to be disciplined when it comes to eating, I know that firsthand but like being disciplined in other areas of your life, there are many benefits (spiritual, physical and emotional) from being able to control impulses and eat and drink in moderation.
Fasting has always been part of the Catholic tradition, especially during Lent. Jesus fasted in the desert. Many other religions also practice fasting. In the Acts of the Apostles, Jesus' followers fasted and prayed before making important decisions. Many people believe (and it is supported by Scripture) that fasting and prayer together is a powerful way to grow spiritually and deepen one's prayer life. Fasting helps us to focus on God and our relationship with God, while strengthening our ability to be disciplined.
It's sounds good, it is good but not that easy to incorporate into daily living. It takes patience to be a disciplined person, to do all the things that we know are good for us and will keep us healthy and balanced as we grow older. I always encourage people to take "baby steps" and in time, if you keep adding positive, healthy habits, it does make a difference in your life and in your health. It's worth striving for, in my opinion.
By the way, over two hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), the great American statesman, wrote the famous phrase, "An apple a day, keeps the doctor away." It was true then and true now. Apples are very healthy and amazingly I recently read that eating an apple everyday helps prevent strokes. Apples are also filled with antioxidants. Ben Franklin knew what he was talking about and he didn't have modern research methods, just a lot of common sense.
I'm taking a couple of weeks off from blogging. Be back soon.

While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, 'Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.' Then, completing their fasting and prayer, they laid hands on them and sent them off.
(Acts: 13:2-3)